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					An Incomplete Guide to SEO


  How to earn $1,000’s a day with Search Engine Optimization and Joomla.


                   An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                "How you can profit from the EXACT SAME search
                                engine optimization strategies that I used to charge
                                        clients $3,590 a day to implement!"

                             In this web-based, no-hype guide, I'll reveal my simple step-by-step
                             search engine optimization strategy that I have been using for 2 years
                             on over 350 clients and that anyone can use to get a front page ranking
                             on Google:

                             Do you want:

                            •   More web site traffic?
                            •   More orders?
                            •   A healthier Internet business?
                            •   A front-page ranking on Google and all major search engines?
                            •   More money than you thought humanly possible?

... if so, keep reading. Get ready to become a search engine optimization "insider". What I'm
about to teach you are the actual secrets that I have used to get unlimited daily traffic for over
350 of my clients from Google. For the sake of your business, you can't afford not to read my
search engine optimization guide!

              Used without permission as an example of how web marketing consultants get a bad name!

This is an example that I found on a website:
http://www.google-search-engine-optimization.com/

There are millions (literally) of these sites on the web. The real truth about search engine
optimization is that there is no “silver bullet” any more. It used to be true that you could stuff a
few keywords into some metatags and you get lots of traffic. Now, search engines are much
smarter. Google recently released its patent #20050071741 on its "Information Retrieval Based
on Historical Data" (that's that little search page to you and me). In the document were over 118
factors that effected a web site's position in the search engine's rankings!

This is the real truth about SEO…….




© 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                 12/23/2005
                                             Page 1 of 29
An Incomplete Guide to SEO

There is no such thing as Search Engine Optimization any more.

The only reality now is having a long term web marketing strategy and a commitment to building
a site full of quality information.

Having said that, assuming that your site is one of the ones with the quality content, SEO still has
its place.

On an average day, about 68 million Americans will go online."
"More than half of them, over 38 million people, will use a search engine."

                                                   Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project, January 2005.

There are a lot of people out there, and why shouldn’t they come to your site? Especially if all
the “other guys” are still just stuffing metatags. In this ebook, I will explain some of the things
you can do to increase your traffic and visibility, and make specific references to how this is
implemented in Joomla. I will be looking at the steps in a roughly chronological order that you
might take as you launch a new site. Follow this guide and some time in the next 6 months, you
might be getting that traffic you wanted.

About the Author:
Barrie North is a freelance web designer based in New England, USA. He specializes in web
design using the open source content management system, Joomla. He also does a bit of SEO on
the side.



                                                     Table of Contents:

An Incomplete Guide to SEO ......................................................................................................... 1
1. Start at the beginning: Site Goals................................................................................................ 3
   Why do you want traffic? ........................................................................................................... 3
   An Introduction to Google .......................................................................................................... 4
   What is your Web Site about: Keywords.................................................................................... 5
   Keywords and Domain Name..................................................................................................... 7
2: Designing your Site .................................................................................................................... 8
   Web Standards and Accessibility................................................................................................ 8
   Outline of Steps for SEO .......................................................................................................... 10
3. Advanced SEO.......................................................................................................................... 14
   Boosting Your Sites Keyword Density..................................................................................... 14
   Link Popularity and Getting Linked ......................................................................................... 20
   A Site Map for the Google Spider ............................................................................................ 25
Appendix: A Quickstart SEO for Joomla ..................................................................................... 28




© 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                                                     12/23/2005
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         An Incomplete Guide to SEO




         1. Start at the beginning: Site Goals
         Why do you want traffic?

Take notes on some of the tasks
                                           Before you go anywhere you need to answer this question. You
outlined in this guide.                    can break it down into:

Your Web Site:                                 •      What is your web site about?
What is your web site about?
                                               •      Who will visit it?
                                               •      What will they gain?
                                               •      What will you gain?

Who Will visit it?                         Write the answers on a piece of paper… no really!

                                           Unless you have a clear idea of what you are building your site for,
                                           you’ll struggle to make decisions later in the process of designing
What will they gain?                       and publishing it. Especially important is thinking about what your
                                           viewers will be gaining from visiting your site. The answer to this
                                           question will form the underpinnings of your search engine
                                           optimization efforts.
What will you gain?

                                           Now you have thought some what about who is going to visit your
                                           site, we can talk about the how.

                                           Publishing your site is only a very small step in the path to having
                                           it get traffic. Unless you do something else, your site will just sit
                                           there and no-one will know it exists. Unfortunately, unlike Kevin
                                           Costner’s “Field of Dreams” Build it and They Will Come is not
                                           true on the web.

                                           So, how can you get visitors to your site?

                                           Well, there are several ways to get the word out to tell people that
                                           you exist.

                                                1. Submit your site to directories
                                                2. Post links on other sites
                                                3. Have your site appear in search engines

                                           Now, the reality is that to have any significant traffic, you need to
                                           do all three of these. They are all inter-related from the perspective
                                           of SEO. In this guide we will look at a rough process starting from


         © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
                                                          Page 3 of 29
         An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                           a brand new site to try and achieve the SEO results you want. First
                                           a little word about some software called “Information Retrieval
                                           Based on Historical Data” (that’s Google to you and me).

         An Introduction to Google
                                           Google is “the” Internet search engine. Over 150 million searches
                                           are conducted daily. Between Google, Yahoo and MSN, these
                                           three account for about 90% of all searches made on the web.

                                           As stated in the first paragraph, over 150 million searches are
                                           conducted every day with Google. Even if your business or
                                           product is currently listed on Google, do you think that a boost in
                                           ranking to the 1st or 2nd page would increase the number of
                                           potential customers coming to your web site?...

                                           How Does Google Calculate Page Relevance?

                                           Although I don’t know how the Google algorithm works exactly,
                                           no-one does, it’s a closely guarded secret, I do know that Google
                                           relies on 118 different calculations to workout the relevancy of any
                                           particular page for a search, the big one is link popularity.
Advanced SEO:
Google isn’t the only player in
town, but surprisingly, most
                                           Link Popularity
search engines get their results
from only a handful of main                If you have downloaded the Google toolbar, then you will have
engines. Bruce Clay made a                 seen the green bar that Google uses to rank every site you visit.
handy chart to learn more                  This ranking is Google’s PageRank, and is indicated on a scale of
                                           1 to 10. Generally, sites with a PageRank of 7-10 are considered
                                           excellent in terms of quality and popularity.

                                           But how is this rank calculated? Quite simply actually. Google’s
                                           main criteria for the calculation of relevancy for a page is based on
                                           the number of web sites that link back to that particular site.

                                           However, having 100,000 web sites linking back to your site will
                                           not necessarily mean that you will attain a PageRank of 10. Each
                                           site that links back to you must in itself contain quality content and
                                           have a high (7-10) PageRank for it to impact positively on the
                                           PageRank of your web site. Yes, sites with a poor PageRank can
                                           bring your sites PageRank down.

                                           If Google’s PageRank technology sounds confusing, just try and
                                           remember that Google’s PageRank is the #1 criterion for
                                           calculating the relevancy of any web page in relation to the
                                           specified search term. We will come back to link popularity later.


         © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
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       An Incomplete Guide to SEO


                                         Now, there are supposedly over 118 factors involved in exactly
                                         how Google calculates your Search Engine Rank Position (SERP),
                                         as mentioned above, Google places more emphasis on PageRank
                                         than other engines. We’ll also be looking at some of the other main
                                         factors in a later chapter.

       What is your Web Site about: Keywords
                                         It’s critical to know exactly why you are building your site and
                                         who for.

Keywords for your site                   Remember this question? We’ll talk now about the first step in
                                         using this information, Keywords.

                                         Keywords are what drives search engines. The idea is that a search
                                         engine wants to return a page in a search about something that the
                                         searcher is looking for. It’s doing this by looking at what was
                                         entered into the search box (the keywords) and then trying to
                                         match those keywords with pages in its database.

                                         A Key Phrase is just a few keywords together. Researchers tell us
                                         that very few people just use one word to search any more and are
                                         getting more sophisticated.

                                         Imagine you are a potential visitor to your site. What keywords or
                                         phrases will you type in to find it? Take a blank piece of paper.
                                         Now, on your piece of paper, write down as many words or
                                         phrases as you can that you as a potential visitor would search for
                                         to find a site like yours in a search engine.

                                         Here’s an example. For a site about baby names you might have:

                                             •      Baby names
                                             •      Popular baby names
                                             •      Most popular baby names

                                         Notice how I didn’t use “baby”. People that are searching on that
                                         term might be looking for who knows. At this point we don’t want
                                         to be too general.

                                         Try to write 20 to 30 keywords or phrases on your piece of paper.
                                         If you’re having trouble coming up with keywords, ask your
                                         partner, friends or family members which keywords they would
                                         use to find your site. At this point you should have a list of no less
                                         than 20 keywords or phrases at your disposal.


       © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                     12/23/2005
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         An Incomplete Guide to SEO


  Advanced SEO:                            Right, now we need to do some research. We need to find out
  Now these tools will only tell you       how many people are searching for our keywords and phrases.
  how many searches are being
  made. Another piece of
  information is how many sites
                                           What we need now is a tool to tell us this information. The big gun
  you are competing against. Even          here is something called Wordtracker. It costs just under $10 for a
  of there are a lot of searches for       3 day subscription, but the information it gives is worth it. If your
  that term, if there are also a lot of    site depends on traffic, then I recommend this tool.
  competing web sites, then getting
  a high SERP will be challenging.
  This is where Wordtracker
                                           Two other free tools work also, but just don’t give the detail.
  shines. It also gives a factor
  called the KEI, the Keyword              http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/suggestion/
  Effectiveness Index. Basically a         http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion
  measure of how effective (easy
  in terms of competition and
  profitable in terms of number of
                                           I use these almost on a daily basis. It allows you to find out which
  searches) a particular key phrase        keywords people are using in their searches, which as I’m sure you
  will be.                                 will agree is very valuable information!

                                           The digitalpoint tool actual includes data from Overture, so if you
                                           are only going to use one tool, use that one.

                                           Start at the top of your keyword list that you wrote earlier and
                                           enter each one into the text box. As you can see, the term
Keywords for your site
                                           suggestion tool returns a list of keywords and how many times
Key Phrase          Count                  they were searched for during the last day. As you type each of
                                           your keywords into the text box and see the number of searches,
                                           write that number down next to your keyword on the page.

                                           As you are doing this, you’ll also come across key phrases that
                                           people are searching on that you didn’t think of. Include them too.

                                           You should now have a list of keywords with the number of
                                           searches for that keyword from last month on your page. To get the
                                           5 most popular keywords, simply take the 5 keywords with the
                                           highest number of searches. Write them down in order of most to
                                           least popular. You should now have your list of 5 popular
                                           keywords, maybe something like this:
 Advanced SEO:
 “odd baby name”, how odd is that          778231         baby name
 for a search term? At this point,         68325          baby girl name
 its worth being creative on your
 search terms. Who would have              63222          baby boy name
 thought this would be getting             38285          odd baby name
 almost 40,000 searches a month!           33583          top 100 baby name

                                           Next we need to get an idea of the competition. Go to Google and
                                           enter in your first key phrase in quotes. Like this..



         © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
                                                       Page 6 of 29
        An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                          “baby name”

Advanced SEO:                             Looking at the right of the Google search, you’ll see what the
Its possible to optimize your             competition is:
pages for both single and plural.
Some engines differentiate
between the two. Again, if you
depend on traffic for your site,
optimize for both.
                                          Not bad, only 3.8 million sites we have to beat. Well, you didn’t
                                          think this would be easy did you?
                                          Take your search terms and for the ones you have narrowed down
                                          to find out your competition and add that as a 3rd column. Make
                                          sure you remember to search in quotes, that looks for these word as
                                          a phase rather than just anywhere.

                                          These keywords are going to form the basis for all of your site
                                          optimization strategies. Keep your keyword list with you as you
                                          read through the rest of these articles.

        Keywords and Domain Name
                                          Engines use your domain name as a factor in the Search Engine
                                          Results Page (SERP). Now there is a lot of debate here, some think
                                          that branding for the viewers is more important than having a
                                          keyword in the URL, its google.com not searchengine.com! But, if
                                          you can combine both, then great! Notice my domain is
                                          www.compassdesigns.net. This will get me a little boost if
                                          someone searches for “web design”, but still retains some
                                          branding.

                                          You can’t easily change your domain after you have made your
                                          site, so this is why we are thinking about SEO before we have even
                                          started on the site design. If we can use a keyword in the domain,
                                          go for it.

        Chapter 1 Summary:

            1. Ask yourself who will visit your site, why, and what will you get out of
               it.

            2. Research your keywords.

            3. Pay for Wordtracker if traffic is critical

            4. Domain name; branding or keyword?


        © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                  12/23/2005
                                                      Page 7 of 29
        An Incomplete Guide to SEO



        2: Designing your Site
                                          Ready for the techie stuff? OK, grab your coffee/beer/herbal chai.

                                          As I mentioned before, designing your site for traffic, both human
                                          and search engine spider is very different than a few years ago. It’s
                                          now about what is on the page that people can see. No more having
                                          a 200 keyword list that is set to the same color as the background
                                          at the bottom of the page.

        Web Standards and Accessibility
                                          Now, it may seem like I am going off topic here, but I am going to
Joomla! Notes:                            talk about two things seemingly unrelated to SEO; designing to
Most content management                   web standards and accessibly.
systems, Joomla included, have
challenges when trying to get
their sites to validate for web           Designing a web site to standards means having a site that will
standards and accessibility. The          benefit the greatest number of web users while ensuring the long-
problem is complicated; content           term viability of the site itself. This means that a site can be viewed
is generated dynamically through          in an array of browsers, or other Internet devices such as PDA’s.
php (for Joomla) so sometimes
either the php code or the                The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is the international
content itself can cause issues.          organization that develops web standards, directed by Tim
                                          Berners-Lee the inventor of the World Wide Web.
Compass Design, of course,
works hard to build valid sites.          Specifically, meeting web standards for design essentially means
We even have an in-depth
tutorial about it.                        using separating content from presentation with Cascading Style
                                          Sheets. One advantage of the CSS-based layout is its flexibility —
                                          the content can be accessed regardless of the type of browser that
                                          is being used. It allows sites to work on many kinds of devices
                                          instead of just the personal computer.

                                          Other advantages include:

                                              •      smaller file sizes and faster page loads,
                                              •      less bandwidth usage,
                                              •      faster development and maintenance,
                                              •      easier to redesign.

                                          It is worth noting that the design principles contained within web
                                          standards also lead to sites that are more usable (along with
                                          credibility, usability is a major factor in why viewers return to a
                                          site).




        © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                     12/23/2005
                                                         Page 8 of 29
An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                  Accessibility, sometimes mistakenly called usability, is an attempt
                                  for a page to be accessible to all possible viewers. Usually this is
                                  chosen to mean such examples as someone that is blind (uses a
                                  screen reader) or old (struggles with small fonts/delicate mouse
                                  based navigation). I use these two as examples as they are the ones
                                  quoted most often (don't shoot the messenger!).

                                  OK, so why did I bring those up?

                                  Well, it’s important to look at your site design from a broad
                                  perspective. Maybe a diagram would help.



                                             SEO                                     Web Standards




                                                                              Accessibility



                                  Many of the factors involved in SEO, standards and accessibility
                                  overlap. For example, designing a site with CSS makes for leaner,
                                  faster pages with will be indexed by search engines more
                                  effectively. Another example would be designing a site with
                                  accessibility in mind so that it can be easily read without graphics
                                  works just as well for someone using a screen reader as it does a
                                  search engine spider.

                                  The implication here is you can get the most effective results by
                                  designing a site that meets web standards and is accessible first. Its
                                  optimization for search engines will come as a natural
                                  consequence. A well designed site will have a large overlap in the
                                  middle of these three areas, a poorly designed site may have no
                                  overlap at all.




© 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
                                               Page 9 of 29
      An Incomplete Guide to SEO



      Outline of Steps for SEO
                                        We will look at some of these steps in more detail in later chapters,
                                        but here we will try and get an overview of some of the main
                                        factors involved.

                                        First and most important:

                                        You need lots of content, LOTS of it. Before you have even
                                        considered site design and such, you should have 100 odd pages of
                                        actual content. Yes, there are supposed to be two zero’s on the end
                                        of that 1… 100, I mean it. A page of content means about 200-500
                                        words.

                                        Of course, no-one does this, I didn’t! But, if you are serious of
                                        getting gobs of traffic, and you do have lots of rich content to
                                        publish, just think how far ahead you will be of poor schmuks like
                                        me.

                                        As I mentioned before, designing your site for traffic, both human
Joomla! Notes:                          and search engine spider is very different than a few years ago. It’s
Critical note: You MUST have            now about what is on the page that people can see. No more having
some sort of SEF enabled.               a 200 keyword list that is set to the same color as the background
Search engines hate dynamically         at the bottom of the page.
generated pages, and that’s the
whole point of Joomla! Even if
you have just basic enabled, the        If you are impatient, according to the “SEO guys”, here are the
benefit of the search engine            most important factors in deciding your SERP, along with a
“seeing” static pages is huge, far      number I came up with to show relative value. This shows you the
outweighing the little bonus            actual relative value between, say, having good anchor text links
gained from having keywords in
                                        compared to keywords in the H1 tag. These ten factors add up to
the title too.
                                        21% of the SERP based on these estimates.
Joomla easily allows you to
manipulate the title of a page.         Title Tag – 2.3%
With built-in SEF enabled, you
title will reflect the content of the
page. Even better is to install a
                                        This is what appears in the blue bar at the top of your browser, it
3rd party SEF, then you can set         comes from a metatag called <title>. As well as being used as a
the page title to be the title alias    pure factor in SERP, it also boosts rank in other ways. Some
of that page. I prefer using the        engines use “click-through” rates as a factor. Sites where the title
title alias for my page title, then I   closely matches the content tend to get better click-throughs
can have the title on the page
and control the one delivered in
                                        (searchers see its not a spam site). When words in the title are also
<title> better.                         used as anchor text in a link to the page, you get more benefit.




      © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
                                                    Page 10 of 29
        An Incomplete Guide to SEO

Advanced SEO:                             Anchor Text of Links – 2.3%
There are a number of free tools
for checking keyword density.             The phrasing, terms, order and length of a link's anchor text is one
The one I use the most is at              of the largest factors taken into account by the major search
www.ranks.nl
                                          engines for ranking. Specific anchor text links help a site to rank
                                          better for that particular term/phrase at the search engines. In other
Joomla! Note!
                                          words, it’s the actual text that represents the link on a web page.
Joomla is good and bad here.
The good part is it’s easy to add         Keyword Use in Document Text – 2.2%
keywords to the meta keywords
tag for that page. You just go to         Your keywords must appear in the actual copy of the page.
the meta info when you are
editing the content and plop them         Supposedly search engines pay more attention to the first and last
in. Note that they are added as           paragraphs. The way to go about this is have your keywords firmly
well as any keywords you have             in your mind as you write your copy. I don’t know about you, but I
specified in the main global              find this really hard. I prefer a different approach.
configuration. It’s good to only
have your most important 2-3
words there and put the rest in           There is a simple trick here, write your quality content, then use a
the pages.                                keyword density tool to find the keyword density. THEN, take the
                                          top words and add them to the meta keywords tag for that page.
The bad part is linked to the fact        This is somewhat backwards for some maybe, it optimizes a page
that Joomla is dynamic. The               for what you actually wrote, rather than trying to write a page
code is not very lean, that is,
there is a lot of html compared to        optimized for certain words. I find I get much better correlation
actual copy text. This in turn            like this and can then tweak my text afterwards.
reduces your keyword density
(indirectly). Using CSS instead of        Sure, if you want to you can further optimize by having the
tables means leaner code. It’s            keywords in header tags and bold etc. As a guide, these might
also possible with CSS to have
your page “source ordered”.               contribute only a few percent to the SERP.
This means that the real content
(the middle column to you and             Accessibility of Document – 2.2%
me) comes before the side
columns and/or navigation.
                                          We are not talking human accessibility here (as in 508).

Joomla! Note!                             “Accessibility is anything on the page that impedes a search engine
Many things to be careful of here.        spider’s ability to crawl a page. There can be a number of
The most important is go turn on          culprits:”
Search Engine Friendly URL’s
(SEF). It changes your links and
pages from dynamic to static.                 •      Avoid Splash Pages: Flash and heavily graphic
The other important factor is                        introductions prohibit engines from crawling your site.
JavaScript menus. They are very               •      Avoid Frames: Never use pages with frames. Frames are
popular because the look great.
                                                     too complex for the crawlers and too cumbersome to index.
As good as they look to people
however, they look equally as                 •      Avoid Cookies: Never require cookies for Web site access!
bad to spiders. Try using CSS to                     Search engine crawlers are unable to enter any cookie-
style you menus, you’ll be                           required materials.
surprised how good they look.                 •      Avoid JavaScript when Possible: Though JavaScript menus
You can even have drop-down
sub menus.                                           are very popular, they disable crawlers from accessing
                                                     those links. Most, well-indexed Web sites incorporate text-
                                                     based links primarily because they are search engine

        © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                     12/23/2005
                                                         Page 11 of 29
      An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                                   friendly. If necessary, JavaScript should be referenced
                                                   externally.
                                            •      Avoid Redirects: Search engines frown upon companies
                                                   that use numerous Web sites to redirect to a single Web
                                                   site.
                                            •      Avoid Internal Dynamic URLs on the Home page: Though
                                                   many sites incorporate internal dynamic links, they should
                                                   not incorporate those links on the home page. Engine
Joomla! Note!                                      crawlers are currently ill-equipped to navigate dynamic
Several Joomla SEF add-ons like                    links - which often pass numerous parameters using
SEF Advanced, OpenSEF and                          excessive characters.
404 SEF allow you to have
keywords in the URL. We                     •      Utilize Your Error Pages: Too often companies forget
mentioned this factor earlier.                     about error pages (such as 404 errors). Error pages should
However, these add-ons tend to                     always re-direct "lost" users to valuable, text-based pages.
be unreliable compared to the                      Placing text links to major site pages is an excellent
basic built-in SEF. The SEO                        practice. Visit www.cnet.com/error for an example of a
benefits you get is quite small, so
from a SEO point of view, its not                  well-utilized error page.
really worth the bother
                                        Links to Document from Site-Internal Pages - 2.1%

                                        Even more important than the holy grail of external links is
                                        internal links. Who knew! Easily the most underrated criteria. But,
                                        it’s important to make sure you are making good use of anchor
Joomla! Note!                           text. A well-linked to document is considered more important than
Thumbs up for Joomla! You can           an obscure page, even if the links are coming from the site itself.
set up sites for the viewers to
add their own content, so its           Primary Subject Matter of Site – 2.1%
effortless to add globs of content
quickly and easily. Remember,
it’s a Content Management               What your website is about is determined through analysis of the
System after all. There are also        content. It’s critical that it correlates to keywords, anchor text, etc.
some add-ons for sitemap,
though I find it’s best to upload a     One strange off shoot of this is perhaps it’s not worth spending
Google sitemap independently.
                                        much effort trying to build the page rank of the home page. This
Joomla! Note!                           strange concept is explained in the idea of Search Engine Theme
Don’t depend on Docman to help          Pyramids.
you in your SEO. Content that is
in pdf files is harder for search       A related factor is having a good sitemap. Not only is it good
engines to index than straight
html.                                   spider food, you can also load it with lots of quality anchor text for
                                        those internal links as well as relevancy text (that which appears
                                        near a link). Also important is the invisible Google sitemap which
                                        is an xml file for the Google spider only.

                                        External Links to Linking Pages – 2.0%

                                        These are the links from other sites to you. Note it’s much better to
                                        have specific pages linked rather than your homepage because of
                                        the idea of Search Engine Theme Pyramids. Don’t bother with link

      © 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                       12/23/2005
                                                       Page 12 of 29
      An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                        farms or anything you see advertised for a link. You are much
                                        better off finding links from sites that have similar topics as
                                        yourself (see below)

                                        Link Popularity of Site in Topical Community – 2.0%
Joomla! Note!
Want a neat trick to find other
sites to link to you?
                                        The search engine is trying to figure out what your page is about,
                                        so it can decide if it’s relevant to a users search. Links from pages
Take advantage of other Joomla          with similar topics add credence to your page. When trying to
sites that share your topic. All        search out those links you can use something like WebFerret. Or if
Joomla sites use the same               you just want a quick method, use the “related:” tag in Google, e.g.
“Contact Us” page in the CMS.
                                        type “related:www.yahoo.com” in and it will search for sites
This page has this in the URL:
                                        related to the topic of Yahoo (whatever that is?). Then spend some
“option=com_contact”                    time emailing webmasters and asking for links. There is software
                                        out there that will do this automatically for you.
So, go to Google and do a
search for your topic along with
this text. For example:
                                        Global Link Popularity of Site – 1.9%

“option=com_contact baby                This means that links from sites that are “important” (i.e. have a
names”                                  high SERP) are more valued than those from a lower SERP. A
                                        factor worth considering when searching out links, get the ones
We are using our keywords as
we want links from our topical
                                        from sites with a high page rank first.
community.
                                        Keyword Spamming – 1.9%

                                        Careful, this is a negative factor!! This means having a keyword
                                        density in text or tags so high that the engine decides you are
                                        stuffing. Your rank will go from #1 to #10000 in a heartbeat. Want
                                        to know the best part? No-one actually knows what percent density
                                        this is, and it’s probably different for different engines! Between
                                        you and me, I am not going above 10% on my pages.

      Chapter 2 Summary:


          1. There are many factors that determine search engine page ranking.

          2. Rather than tweak minor tags, its better to leverage Joomla’s true
             power of being a fully fledged Content Management System to gain
             rank

          3. Don’t use flash (ok, I admit I am biased)




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      3. Advanced SEO
      Boosting Your Sites Keyword Density
                                        Your sites keyword density is one criteria that search engines will
                                        judge your site on when deciding where to index you on a per
                                        search-term basis. Keyword density refers to the number of times a
                                        keyword appears through a particular page on your web site. Using
                                        our top 5 keywords from the Overture term suggestion tool, we can
                                        boost the keyword density of our web site in 4 ways:

                                        • Keyword placement in the <title> tag
                                        • <h1> and <h2> tags to emphasize keywords
Joomla! Note!                           • Naming your web site and pages with keywords
Here we again need to make use          • Incorporating keywords into body text
of some sort of SEF in Joomla.
With a SEF package operating, a
relevant title will be generated        Let’s now take a look at each of these methods in more detail.
from the text of the article. This is
important as the keywords in the        Note: Make sure you have your top 5 keywords handy.
page title need to match those in
the text of the page.
                                        Keyword Placement in the <title> Tag
More advanced add-ons actually
allow you finer control over the        Overall, we are aiming for a 10% keyword density per page on
title of a page.                        your web site. That means that for every page on your web site,
                                        you need to incorporate your top 5 keywords / phrases to achieve a
Note: We are talking about the
title of the web page here, not to
                                        10% keyword density.
be confused with the title of the
article in Joomla.                      When a web page is chosen by Google as a match to a search term,
                                        the title and first few lines of “readable” text are shown from that
The section here about the              web site in Google’s results. Google also weighs these two pieces
<title> tag is not really applicable
if you are using a CMS such as
                                        of text highly when calculating the relevance of your web site.
Joomla. In a CMS, titles are
generated dynamically in some           We will use your top 5 keywords / phrases to construct your title
way.                                    tags. Notice how I said “title tags” and not title tag. Each page on
                                        your web site needs to have a different, slightly reworded title tag
                                        that uses some of your top 5 keywords in each one. As you will
                                        soon see, each title tag also needs to relate to that pages name and
                                        heading tags to create the ideal keyword density.




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                                  Let’s say that I run a web site about those baby names again. Here
                                  were my top 5 keywords / phrases:

                                  baby name
                                  baby girl name
                                  baby boy name
                                  odd baby name
                                  top 100 baby name

                                  Let’s also say that my site has 4 pages:

                                  • A home page
                                  • A page about baby names
                                  • A services page
                                  • A “fast facts” page

                                  I would need 4 differently worded page titles. Using my keywords
                                  and the “no more than 40 characters in a title” rule, here’s what I
                                  came up with:

                                             Title #1: Baby names
                                             Title #2: baby girl names and baby boy names
                                             Title #3: Baby name services
                                             Title #4: What are the top 100 baby names?

                                  In each of the titles I’ve underlined where my top 5 keywords /
                                  phrases are. Notice how every title is different, yet between them
                                  they contain a mix and match of every one of my 5 keywords /
                                  phrases?

                                  There are two tips which I will stress when creating the content of
                                  your title tags:

                                  a. Use every single one of your top 5 keywords in various mix-
                                     and-match combinations through each of your web pages title
                                     tags
                                  b. Keep the length of each titles text (excluding the <title> and
                                     </title> tags) under 40 characters

                                  So, take what I’ve just told you and write down title descriptions
                                  for each page on your web site. Once you’ve done that, place the
                                  descriptions between the <title> and </title> tags in each of your
                                  pages.




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                                        For example, if one of my web pages looked like this:
                                        <html>
                                        <head>
                                        <title> My old page title </title>
                                        </head>
                                        <body>
                                        …

                                        … then I would change the highlighted text to reflect my new page
                                        title description,
                                        like this:

                                        <html>
                                        <head>
                                        <title> Baby Names </title>
                                        </head>
                                        <body>
                                        …

Joomla! Note!                           One of the best ways to check the effectiveness of the phrasing of
With Joomla there are some              your keywords is to compare them to those of your competitors.
choices to be made when                 Use Google to search for one of your top 5 keywords / phrases.
implementing H1 and H2 tags.
                                        Look at how the top 5 ranked search results word their titles. Are
Our article title (in a college         you using your keywords in a similar fashion? Maybe you could
paper sense rather than a <title>       rearrange a word or two? Analyze these results and make sure your
sense) should summarize it in           web page titles are the same -– if not better –- than those of your
keywords, this is what the H1 tag       competitors.
also does. Joomla has its own
dynamic tag generated for the
title of an article. You have           <h1> and <h2> tags to emphasize keywords
probably seen settings in the
admin backend to turn titles on or      Heading tags have been used for years in HTML to improve the
off (Joomla article titles). Now, its   formatting of a particular word or sentence on a web page.
also possible in the Joomla
parameters to make this title a
                                        Heading tags range from <h1> (bigger text, signifying more
link.                                   importance) to <h2>, <h3>, <h4>, <h5> and <h6> (smaller text,
                                        signifying least importance).
Now, both H1 tags and internal          Headings tags are generally used to emphasize a page or paragraph
links give a boost to SEO, as we        heading to search engines for importance. You should stick to only
saw in the last section. I couldn’t
tell which is better, no-one
                                        <h1> and <h2> tags. If I had a normal piece of HTML code that
knows.                                  looked like this:

I do know, however, that you            <p> <strong>Hello Today!</strong> </p>
should never have a Joomla title
tag that isn’t a link. Better to turn
titles off and put a H1 tag at the
                                        … then the output from this would simply be some bolded text:
top of your content.
                                        Hello Today!

                                        However, if I use a <h1> tag instead, like this:

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                                  <p>
                                   <h1>Hello Today!</h1> </p>
                                  … then the text would now look like this:

                                  Hello Today!
                                  Not only is text between heading tags more visually appealing, but
                                  if worded correctly it will boost your Google ranking significantly,
                                  as Google picks up keywords between headings tags as having a
                                  higher relevance than any other text around it.

                                  Let’s look at how to do this now.

                                  Firstly, take a look at your web page in a web browser. Do you
                                  currently have any page or paragraph headings? If you do, what do
                                  they look like? Do they use <h1> and <h2> tags to emphasize
                                  importance, or are they simply formatted to look bigger with other
                                  formatting tags, such as <font>?

                                  If your page and paragraph headings aren’t using <h1> or <h2>
                                  tags, then it’s time to get creative. Look through your pages HTML
                                  code for the text in your page or paragraph headings. Instead of
                                  surrounding your page headings with <font> tags, replace the
                                  <font> tag with <h1>, and the </font> tag with </h1>. For
                                  paragraph headings, replace <font> tags with <h2>, and </font>
                                  tags with </h2>.

                                  For example, here’s a page before changing the tags:

                                  <html>
                                  <head>
                                  <title> Web site promotion and marketing </title>
                                  </head>
                                  <body bgcolor=”#ffffff”>

                                  <font size=”4”><b>Welcome to my web site</b></font>
                                  <br><br>
                                  <font size=”2”>About Us</b>
                                  Welcome to our web site. We specialize in online marketing
                                  …

                                  … and here’s that same page with the heading tags used to replace
                                  the font tags:

                                  <html>
                                  <head>


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                                  <title> Baby Names </title>
                                  </head>
                                  <body bgcolor=”#ffffff”>

                                   <h1>Welcome to my web site</h1>
                                   <h2>About Us</h2>
                                   <p>Welcome to our web site. We specialize in online
                                  marketing</p>
                                  …

                                  Make these changes to every page on your web site. View one of
                                  the updated pages in your web browser. If the text between your
                                  <h1> and <h2> tags doesn’t look the best, you can use a style sheet
                                  to make it look more fancy -– without affecting how Google will
                                  rank your pages. If you’d like to learn about style sheets then take
                                  a look at these links:

                                  • http://www.htmlhelp.com/reference/css/
                                  • http://www.w3.org/MarkUp/Guide/Style
                                  • http://www.pageresource.com/dhtml/indexcss.htm

                                  Now that you have clearly defined page and paragraph heading
                                  tags, you need to optimize the actual text between the heading tags,
                                  because this is the text that Google will pick up and use as part of
                                  your sites keyword density.

                                  The trick here is keyword density. Using your top 5 keywords /
                                  phrases, you should create heading tags for each page that relate to
                                  the title of that page. For example, if I had a page title tag that
                                  looked like this:

                                  <title> Baby Names </title>

                                  ... then I would want to concentrate on including these words
                                  throughout my page enough times to produce a 10% keyword
                                  density (i.e. for every 10 words on my page, 1 of them would be a
                                  word in my page title tag).

                                  Taking this into consideration, I might create a page heading that
                                  looks like this:

                                  <h1>Baby Names and more, find out what are the most popular
                                  names for your baby</h1>

                                  See how I’ve used the same keywords, but in a different sentence
                                  that makes sense (i.e. conforms to proper grammar standards)? I



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                                       could continue this by setting up various headings for my
                                       paragraphs with <h2> tags:

                                       • <h2>Girl Baby Names<h2>
                                       • <h2>Boy Baby Names</h2>

Joomla! Note!                          Naming Your Web Site and Pages with Keywords
Again, and ad-on SEF package
will allow you to manipulate the       The next thing that you can do to boost your keyword density is to
actual URL’s of the pages.             name your web site and web pages effectively. How do you do
                                       this? Well, you guessed it –- by using your top 5 keywords /
                                       phrases in your actual domain name and file names of our web
                                       pages.

                                       Keeping with our earlier example, if one of our phrases was “baby
                                       names” and we had a page with these heading tags setup:

                                       <h1>Baby Names and more, find out what are the most popular
                                       names for your baby</h1>
                                       <h2>Girl Baby Names<h2>
                                       <h2>Boy Baby Names</h2>

                                       … then we would save this web page as:

                                       “baby-names.html”

                                       Notice how each keyword is now part of the web pages file name
                                       as well? Google takes both domain name and web page file names
                                       into account when ranking a web site. Your ideal domain name
                                       will look like this:

                                       http://www.keyword1-keyword2-keyword3.com
                                       I.e. take 2-3 keywords from your top 5, separate them with
                                       hyphens and use this domain name for your web site. Having
                                       some/all of your top 5 keywords in your domain name is a sure-fire
                                       way to boost your search ranking!
                                       Note: It doesn’t matter if you use a dash or an underscore to
                                       separate the keywords in your domain name and page names -–
                                       Google doesn’t care.

                                       Incorporating Keywords into Body Text

                                       We’ve already seen how to use your top 5 keywords in both the
                                       title and headings of your web pages. The last thing that we can do
                                       to boost keyword density is to include keywords throughout the
                                       actual content of your web page.



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                                  As I’ve already mentioned, you should aim for a keyword density
                                  of 10% -- but where do you put your keywords?

                                  Well, it’s quite simple actually. My general rule of thumb is to
                                  place keywords in a ratio using this rule:
                                  Number of keywords per paragraph = number of paragraphs /
                                  number of keywords

                                  For example, if I have 2 keywords and 4 paragraphs on one of my
                                  web pages, then I would include 2 keywords per paragraph. Yes,
                                  this totals to 8 keywords (2 keywords x 4 paragraphs), but I can
                                  rearrange keywords as well.
                                  Note: If you end up with a “number of keywords per paragraph”
                                  value less than 1, then just round it up to 1.

                                  If you use these correctly then your content should have an average
                                  keyword density of 10%. It is OK to have 1 paragraph with a
                                  keyword density of 13% and another with 7%, just as long as they
                                  all average out. When used in combination with the keywords in
                                  the title tag and headings on your web site, you now have a perfect
                                  keyword density setup for Google, which will produce excellent
                                  rankings for your web pages.

                                  Note: Remember that you should choose 2 or 3 of your keywords
                                  per page and include them in your title tag, page and paragraph
                                  headings, and also the content of your web page. If you run out of
                                  keywords, then simply rearrange them to form new phrases.

Link Popularity and Getting Linked
                                  Google’s most important criteria for ranking a web site is its link
                                  popularity, but what exactly is link popularity and how can you get
                                  it working for your web site? Put simply, link popularity represents
                                  the number of sites that link back to your web site.

                                  If you have downloaded the Google toolbar, then you will have
                                  seen the green bar that Google uses to rank every site you visit.
                                  This ranking is Google’s PageRank, and is indicated on a scale of
                                  1 to 10. Generally, sites with a PageRank of 7-10 are considered
                                  excellent in terms of quality and popularity.

                                  But how is this rank calculated? Quite simply actually. Google’s
                                  main criteria for the calculation of relevancy for a page is based on
                                  the number of web sites that link back to that particular site.




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                                  However, having 100,000 web sites linking back to your site will
                                  not necessarily mean that you will attain a PageRank of 10. Each
                                  site that links back to you must in itself contain quality content and
                                  have a high (7-10) PageRank for it to impact positively on the
                                  PageRank of your web site. Yes, sites with a poor PageRank can
                                  bring your sites PageRank down.

                                  How many sites are currently linking back to your web site? If you
                                  don’t know, it’s easy to find out. Just go to Google.com and type
                                  “link:www.yoursite.com” into the search box (replacing
                                  www.yoursite.com with the domain name of your web site). When
                                  the search results are returned, look at the text in the right-hand
                                  side of the blue bar at the top of the page. It should look something
                                  like this:



                                  In the example above, there are 4,320 web sites linking back to this
                                  site. If there are only a handful linking back to your web site then
                                  don’t worry -– by the end of this section you should be able to
                                  increase this number by 5, 10, 20 or even 100 times!

                                  “How many web sites should be linking to my site?” I hear you
                                  ask. As a general rule of thumb, you want as many sites linking
                                  back to your site as those linking back to the site in position #1 for
                                  one of your 5 keywords.

                                  Take one of your 5 keywords / phrases that we worked out earlier
                                  and search for it on Google. Take the www part of the URL for the
                                  first search result of this keyword and find the number of web sites
                                  that link to that web site -– this should be your goal for the number
                                  of web sites linking back to yours.

                                  For example, if one of your keywords was “baby names” and the
                                  first site that came up when you did a search for this keyword was
                                  www.babynames.com then perform a link popularity check on this
                                  site by searching for “link: www.babynames.com” in Google.

                                  When the search results page is displayed, look at the number after
                                  “about” in the text on the right hand side of the blue bar at the top
                                  of this page. That’s the number of sites linking back to this web
                                  site, and it’s also the number that you should be aiming for to link
                                  back to your web site.
                                  So how do you go about finding sites to link back to your web site?
                                  There is 1 easy method that I will now discuss. It’s called “finding
                                  web sites using WebFerret”.



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                                  Finding Web Sites Using WebFerret

                                                                                       One tool that
                                                                                       many
                                                                                       webmasters
                                                                                       (including
                                                                                       myself) use is
                                                                                       WebFerret,
                                                                                       which is a free
                                                                                       tool owned by
                                                                                       CNet.
                                                                                       WebFerret is an
                                                                                       excellent tool
                                                                                       that you can use
                                                                                       to find sites that
                                  have similar interests to your web site –- these are also the perfect
                                  web sites to ask to link back to your web site to build your link
                                  popularity!

                                  Click here to download WebFerret. Once downloaded, click on
                                  your start menu -> programs -> WebFerret -> WebFerret to launch
                                  it. It should look like this:


                                  Now, do a search in Google and write down the URL’s of the top
                                  10 or 20 sites returned.

                                  Now we will use WebFerret to find what sites are linking to these
                                  top 10. We use the same syntax as Google:

                                  link:www.whateverthesiteis.com

                                                                                          Press enter or
                                                                                          click on the
                                                                                          search button.
                                                                                          WebFerret
                                                                                          will go off
                                                                                          and find all
                                                                                          sites that link
                                                                                          back to the
                                                                                          site that you
                                                                                          entered. It
                                                                                          should now
                                                                                          look
                                                                                          something
                                  like this, one I did for finding SEO sites:



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                                  The sites shown in the list for WebFerret are the sites that you
                                  want linking back to your web site. This is where the hard work
                                  begins, and if you’re serious about getting a top 20 ranking in
                                  Google, then you really need to spend a solid 4-5 hours on this
                                  next exercise.

                                  For each web site in the WebFerret list, open it up in a new
                                  browser window. If its PageRank is 7 or higher, then write down
                                  its “address” field either on a piece of paper or in a new Microsoft
                                  word document. Repeat this for every site in the WebFerret list.

                                  There could be anywhere from 50 to 5,000 sites in this list, but it’s
                                  getting these sites to link to your site that will boost both your link
                                  popularity and push your PageRank through the roof!

                                  Once you’ve written each address down, start at the top of your list
                                  and visit each site. Search the site for both a contact email address
                                  AND a contact name. Write these down next to the web sites
                                  address on your list.

                                  If you can’t find a contact email for some of the sites, then simply
                                  put the contact email down as webmaster@sitename.com
                                  (replacing sitename.com with the domain name of the web site,
                                  minus the “www” part). If you can’t find a contact name, then just
                                  write down “webmaster”.
                                  You’ll now have a list of web sites, contact email addresses and
                                  first names that looks something like this:

                                  www.site1.com john@site1.com John
                                  www.site4.com info@site4.com Mary
                                  www.site6.com fsmith@site6.com Fred …

                                  You now need to email each and every contact person on your list
                                  and ask them if they would kindly link back to your web site.

                                  Fire up your favorite email program and start at the top of your list.
                                  Use an email with a subject line of “request for link swap” that
                                  looks similar to the one shown below. Send it to each contact email
                                  on your list (replacing the values in triangular brackets where
                                  appropriate):

                                  Hi <Contact Name>,
                                  This is <Your Name> from <Your Site Name> (<Your Site
                                  URL>). I was just looking around the Internet for sites that share a
                                  common theme to my site, and I was wondering if you would be
                                  interested in swapping links with me?


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                                  If you would, then please place this link on your site:

                                  <a href=”<Your Site URL>”><Your Site Description></a>

                                  Just email me when you have done that. I will immediately place a
                                  link back to your web site on my site.

                                  Thanks for taking them time to read my email :)

                                  Regards,
                                  <Your Name>
                                  <Your Site URL>


                                  Note: Google evaluates links back to your site on the actual
                                  description that the link contains, so try and include your sites
                                  name as well as 2-3 of your top 5 keywords in the link description,
                                  such as “baby-names.com – Get a great baby name for your boy or
                                  girl.

                                  Notice how I said “…just email me when you have done that. I
                                  will immediately place a link back to your web site on my site.”?
                                  Nothing in this world is free, and if you want someone to link to
                                  your site, then you’ll need to show appreciation by linking back to
                                  their web site.

                                  Once they reply telling you that they’ve placed a link from their
                                  site to your site, go to their web site and double-check that the link
                                  exists and is working. Send them back a reply email along these
                                  lines:

                                  Hi <Contact Name>,
                                  Thank you very much for linking to my site! I’ve placed a link
                                  from my site to
                                  yours, and you can see it at <Your Site URL>.

                                  Thanks again!

                                  Regards,
                                  <Your Name>
                                  <Your Site URL>


                                  As you have probably guessed, you will now need to create a page
                                  on your site with links to all of the sites that are linking back to
                                  you. Call this page “links.html” or something similar and make


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                                       sure you include its URL as the <Your Site URL> in the email
                                       above.

                                       Lastly, you want to make sure that Google knows about each site
                                       that is linking back to you. Go to
                                       http://www.google.com/addurl.html and submit the URL of the
                                       page that’s linking back to you. For example, if
                                       http://www.somesite.com/links.html is linking back to you, then
                                       submit this page to the Google spider –- this will make sure that
                                       Google picks up the link on its next index, thus boosting your link
                                       popularity and PageRank quicker!


     A Site Map for the Google Spider
                                       OK. So, by this point you’ve got your page titles, headings and
                                       paragraph headings setup. You’ve got the ideal domain name and
Joomla! Note!                          lots of sites linking back to your web site. Great! But now it’s time
There are several add-on               to look at building a site map for your site, so that the Google
components for Joomla that can         spider knows which pages are on your site and where they can be
create a site map from the             found.
menus automatically. I strongly
encourage you to use one, then
you can skip the next part!            Put simply, a site map is a web page that links to all other web
                                       pages on your site. On this page, you use your top 5 keywords and
                                       some simple HTML to make sure every single page on your site is
                                       linked together. Once done, you submit the site map to Google and
                                       it helps the Google spider (the computers that spider -– or crawl –-
                                       your web site for web pages) find every page on your site. If done
                                       correctly in correlation with everything else that we’ve looked at in
                                       this article, a site map will help bring you higher rankings in a
                                       shorter period of time.

                                       First thing’s first. If you’ve never seen a site map, then take a look
                                       at Apple’s site map. See how it’s simply a mass of plain-text
                                       links? Anyone can build a site map, however many forget this one
                                       important rule:

                                       Always make sure that the descriptions of the links in your site
                                       map contain your top 5 keywords in some form or another!

                                       For example, which link do you think Google will list higher in its
                                       index for the keywords “widget features”? This one:

                                       <a href=”features.html”>Features</a>

                                       … or this one:


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                                  <a href=”widget_features.html”>Widget Features – Size, Shape and
                                  Cost</a>

                                  If you’re answer was the second one then you’re correct.
                                  Remember that you MUST include your top 5 keywords in all
                                  links to pages on your web site from your site map.
                                  It’s now time to build your site map. Start from your home page
                                  and write down the full URL (such as
                                  http://www.mysite.com/mypage.html) as well as a 4-10 word
                                  description for every page on your web site. Remember to include
                                  at least 1 of your keywords in each pages description.

                                  Here’s an example for a site that sells widgets:
                                     • http://www.widgetsite.com/default.html
                                         Home Page for Our Widgets Site, WidgetSite.com
                                     • http://www.widgetsite.com/widgetfeatures.html
                                         Features of Widgets - Size, Shape, Cost
                                     • http://www.widgetsite.com/widgets.html
                                         Our List of Widgets Including Popular Blue Widgets and
                                         Green Widgets
                                     • http://www.widgetsite.com/articlesonwidgets.html
                                         Our Articles On Widgets Including How to Install Widgets
                                     • http://www.widgetsite.com/buy_widgets.html
                                         Buy Our Widgets Online

                                  Once you’ve made this list, you now need to convert them into
                                  links and put them up as a page on your site. Your site map doesn’t
                                  have to look fancy. It can simply include your logo and each link
                                  listed one under another -– Google doesn’t care what it looks like.
                                  Now, take each link that you have written down and build your site
                                  map. Here’s an example using the widget links above. I saved this
                                  as widget_sitemap.html:

                                  <html>
                                  <head>
                                  <title> WidgetSite.com Site Map </title>
                                  </head>
                                  <body>

                                  <h1>Site Map for Our Widget Site, WidgetSite.com</h1>
                                  <ul>
                                  <li>
                                  <a href="http://www.widgetsite.com/default.html">
                                  Home Page for Our Widgets Site, WidgetSite.com</a></li> <li><a
                                  href="http://www.widgetsite.com/widget_features.html">
                                  Features of Widgets - Size, Shape, Cost</a></li>
                                  <li><a href="http://www.widgetsite.com/widgets.html">
                                  Our List of Widgets Including Popular Blue Widgets and Green
                                  Widgets</a></li>
                                  <li><a href="http://www.widgetsite.com/articles_on_widgets.html">


© 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                    12/23/2005
                                              Page 26 of 29
An Incomplete Guide to SEO

                                  Our Articles On Widgets Including How to Install Widgets</a></li>
                                  <li><a href="http://www.widgetsite.com/buy_widgets.html">
                                  Buy Our Widgets Online</a></li>
                                  </ul>
                                  </body>
                                  </html>

                                  Here’s how the simple site map for WidgetSite.com would look:

                                                                        Once you’ve created your site
                                                                        map, you need to make sure
                                                                        that every page on your site
                                                                        links to it. If you run your site
                                                                        using templates, then it’s
                                                                        simply a matter of editing the
                                                                        template that contains your
                                                                        menu and including a link
                                                                        there. If not, you will need to
                                                                        edit each page of your site and
                                                                        include it. Use a link like this:




                                  <a href=”http://www.yoursite.com/yoursite_sitemap.html”>
                                  YourSite Site Map</a>

                                  Finally, you need to submit the URL of your site map to Google.
                                  Click here to go to the Google “Add URL” page and submit the
                                  link to your site map. In the example above, this link is
                                  http://www.yoursite.com/yoursite_sitemap.html.




© 2005 Compass Design, All rights reserved                                                      12/23/2005
                                              Page 27 of 29
An Incomplete Guide to SEO

Appendix: A Quickstart SEO for Joomla
I thought I would provide a much shorter version of the main guide. Use this if you already have
a site ranked and want to see what you can implement to get your ranking higher.

1. Search Engine Friendly URL’s (SEF)
You *have* to get some sort of SEF, either use the one that is built in, or another. Why? Two
reasons, one is engines don't like dynamic files. Just the basic SEF will take care of this. Second
reason is to get keywords into your page title, you need one of the add-on SEF's for this. Two
were mentioned above.
Note: I use openSEF, and use the title alias for my page title, then I can have the title on the page
and control the one delivered in <title> better.

2. Keyword density
This is an SEO biggie. There is a simple trick here, write your quality content, then use the tool
of your choice to find the keyword density. THEN, take the top three words and add them to the
meta keywords in the parameters part of the page (in Joomla admin). This is somewhat
backwards for some maybe, it optimizes a page for what you actually wrote, rather than trying to
write a page optimized for certain words (which I always find difficult).

3. Page tags:

       h1, h2 etc.
       Drop all the titles, don't use them. THEN simply add relevant h1/h2 tags to all of the
       content. I have done this for some of my pages at www.compassdesigns.net, you’ll have
       to view the source to see the tags. Some argue that you get an SEO kick from the title
       keywords being in a link, but hey, why not do both?

       <strong> etc.
       Go through your content and bold/italic your keywords. If you want you can set them not
       to display in the CSS (I think) and then they still get the SEO kick.

       abbr, etc.
       People forget about these, go through and set the abbreviations and acronyms in your
       body text with appropriate CSS. Why? Well, it basically repeats keywords from the
       engines point of view, and looks professional too.

       Links
       Go through and liberally link to your own site from the body text. Here is here setting up
       the SEF makes it easy. Make sure you are including your keywords in the link rather than
       just something like read more.

4. Sitemap
Site maps are crucial to improving natural search rankings precisely because they enable engine
crawlers to access each of your Web site's pages. Your site map should begin with a brief
description of your Web site's purpose or mission and then include text links to all major site
pages (maximum of 100 links). You should also include a brief explanation above each subset or

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                                           Page 28 of 29
An Incomplete Guide to SEO
category of links. Each page within your Web site should provide a text link to your site map.
Additionally, your site map should be stored in your root directory - making it easily accessible
to all crawlers. Visit WashingtonPost.com's "Site Index" for an excellent example of a site map
best practice. Remember, that search engines only crawl the first 100 links on a webpage -
including your sitemap. It is important to note that search engine crawlers have difficulty with
drop-down menus, JavaScript, and search boxes. Site maps are simple ways to attract crawlers to
each page. There are a number of Joomla components that will create a dynamic sitemap on your
site.

5. Google sitemap
Its an xml file, use it, love it.

6. Submit to engines
Submit it, then don't bother for 3 months

7. Get some links
Well..... yes...... type “related:www.yoursite.com” into google and contact the top 20 returns for
links.

8. Utilize Your Error Pages
Too often companies forget about error pages (such as 404 errors). Error pages should always re-
direct "lost" users to valuable, text-based pages. Placing text links to major site pages is an
excellent practice. Visit www.cnet.com/error for an example of a well-utilized error page.

9. Page size
Engines tend to weigh content at the start of a document more than content further down. If a
page is too long, typically more than 50k in markup only, then it should be broken up into
multiple pages.

10. Your homepage isn't that important in SEO. Don't waste time trying to drive traffic to it. It’s
your pages that are 3-5 levels deep that are you money makers.

11. Create one quality content page per day
Quality content is the most important SEO factor. For a site that will perform well, you
eventually need 200 odd pages of content. This is the important point. QUICK SEO IS DEAD.
The only way to perform well in SEO now is to have a rich content site. Google has 118 factors
that contribute to where a page appears in its rankings. Whether you have x or y is really minor
in the big picture.


Follow these steps and you will have oodles of traffic within, well, 6 months-ish.

Enjoy!




© 2005 Compass Design                                                                     12/23/2005
                                            Page 29 of 29

				
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